Date : 21st February 2014

Venue: India Islamic Cultural Centre



The day long conclave focused mainly on what is called Heritage Tourism, a niche field within tourism which is gaining a lot of admirers over recent years. Especially in the Indian context heritage becomes a particularly important nomenclature as a large percentage of tourists we receive are for this segment. The speakers focused on varying aspects from different parts of the country.


A pair of twin sisters from Uttarakhand visited this event specially to raise awareness about a stupendous achievement of theirs. They had at the age of 22 already scaled the summit of Mt. Everest & also top peaks on 3 other continents. Mr. Mandeep Soin, one of India’s foremost adventure travelers, was also one of the panelists. He spoke about how tourism actually did a lot of good in preserving heritage in certain remote parts of the country but it also has done harm in certain other parts. It was also pointed out by one of the panelists that heritage was more than just man-made monuments. It also included natural heritage.

A note of caution however was suggested by Mr. Parvez Dewan, Tourism Secretary, who was the chief guest on the day. He suggested that a lot of ‘heritage’ that is on display in this country is actually a fabrication. A lot of palaces & forts which are peddled in the tourist market as being extremely old are nothing but just early 20th century or last few decades of the 19th century creations. Also a lot of works of those periods have a common theme across the length & breadth of this country & bear a striking resemblance with British architecture of the same period.


The day ended finally with an acknowledgement of the achievements made in this field over the last 2 decades & an introspection in to what all can be achieved. It was a unanimous call from all panelists that interpretation centres need to be formalized to ensure better dissemination of heritage related information the potential tourists.


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Written by Mr. Aritro Dasgupta

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